Posted in Access to Information

Open Democracy Charter

ODAC has taken the initiative to write an Open Democracy Charter which is aimed at generating a declaration of open governance principles for South Africa. Key stakeholders of government, private sector, academia and civil society were consulted in the drafting process of the Charter, to ensure that the most pertinent issues were highlighted for inclusion. After reflection on those consultations, the following core principles have been developed as enshrining the key components of open governance for any entity:

  1. Right of access
  2. Equal access
  3. Presumption of openness
  4. Proactive disclosure
  5. Quality of information
  6. Active promotion
  7. Quality of service
  8. Access to decision-making
  9. Whistle-blowing
  10. Redress
  11. Investment
  12. Private sector

Here is the full Draft Open Democracy Charter. In preparation for the launch of this Charter, ODAC would like feedback on this principles to ensure the a full consultation process has been facilitated. If you have any feedback on these principles, you can send that feedback to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. details of the launch event will soon follow.

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The PAIA Training & Consultancy Services Unit conducts training courses and workshops on the Promotion of Access to Information Act of 2000 (PAIA)

The purpose of the workshops and courses is to equip organisations and individuals with the necessary knowledge and skills to comply with the Acts, and to use the legislation to their advantage. This is to ensure improved Corporate Governance in the Public and the Private Sector through enabling people to expose corruption and fraud in the workplace without risk, and to improve the quality of decision making and of people’s lives through greater access to information.

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Information Officers

To welcome in 2012, ODAC will be developing a page to assist information officers in both the public and private sector to fulfil their obligations under the Promotion of Access to Information Act 2 of 2000. Over the next few weeks will be growing a body of resources which we hope will assist information officers. This will include a simple checklist or listing of the various responsibilities of private and public information officers in terms of the Act. We will also use this page to discuss examples of best practice.

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Open Government Partnership (OGP)

Launching our OGP Monitoring Project

30 August 2012

ODAC has launched our OGP Monitoring Website. Though our involvement in the process began in 2011, and we have been gathering indicators for some time, we have finally conglomerated it onto a wordpress website to make the process open and available to the general public. You can visit the site at

It is worth noting in particular that anybody who wishes to makes comments on the access to information environment in South Africa, whether positive or negative, and wishes to describe the types of information they need from government can do so through the site here.

We will use all the information gathered to create regular report cards on the OGP process.
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The PAIA Unit embarks on a campaign to create awareness of the right of access to information nationally, and has noted a need to accelerate compliance on PAIA at provincial and local government levels. The key objectives of ODAC’s advocacy work are to:

  • Enhance civil society access to public & private information through the Promotion of Access to Information Act (PAIA).

  • Enhance capacity of holders of information to realise effectively the right to access information through the operation of PAIA and PAJA.

  • Support effective implementation of the Promotion of Access to Information Act, the Promotion of Administrative Justice Act.

  • Support the implementing and monitoring agencies in the performance of their statutory responsibilities under both laws through replication of international best practices and benchmarks.

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